Hearing Tests

Contents

Balance Disorders

Your sense of balance depends on signals sent to your brain from your eyes, ears, and muscles. The vestibular system in the inner ear, also known as the labyrinth, plays a crucial role in maintaining balance. At Meenakshi Hearing Aid Centre, we offer specialized treatment and solutions for balance disorders.

Common Symptoms Include:

  • Dizziness or vertigo
  • Falling or feeling like you might fall
  • Staggering when walking
  • Lightheadedness or faintness
  • Blurred vision
  • Confusion or disorientation
  • Other symptoms like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and anxiety

Treatment Options:

  • Balance Retraining Exercises: Customized exercises to improve balance.
  • Positioning Procedures: Clearing particles from your inner ear.
  • Diet and Lifestyle Changes: Limiting dietary triggers and wearing compression stockings.
  • Medication: To manage dizziness and nausea.
  • Surgery: For specific conditions like Ménière’s disease or acoustic neuroma.

Vertigo


Vertigo is a symptom, rather than a condition itself. It’s the sensation that you, or the environment around you, is moving or spinning. This feeling may be barely noticeable, or it may be so severe that you find it difficult to keep your balance and do everyday tasks.

Common Symptoms Include:

  • Loss of balance – which can make it difficult to stand or walk
  • Feeling sick or being sick
  • Dizziness

Treatment 

  • Self-Resolution: Some cases of vertigo improve on their own over time.
  • Persistent Cases: Conditions like Ménière’s disease can cause repeated episodes for months or even years.
  • Epley Manoeuvre: Simple head movements are effective for treating benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV).
  • Medications: Prochlorperazine and certain antihistamines provide early-stage relief in most vertigo cases.
  • Vestibular Rehabilitation Training (VRT): A series of exercises designed to help with dizziness and balance issues. 


Tinnitus Management

Tinnitus is when you experience ringing or other noises in one or both of your ears. The noise you hear when you have tinnitus isn’t caused by an external sound, and other people usually can’t hear it. Tinnitus is a common problem. It affects about 15% to 20% of people and is especially common in older adults. Tinnitus is usually caused by an underlying condition, such as age-related hearing loss, an ear injury, or a problem with the circulatory system. Visit Meenakshi Hearing Aid Center for Tinnitus Treatment.

Symptoms

  • Buzzing
  • Roaring
  • Clicking
  • Hissing
  • Humming


Tinnitus Treatment:

  1. Underlying Conditions:Earwax Removal: Clearing earwax blockages can alleviate symptoms.
    • Blood Vessel Treatment: Medication, surgery, or other interventions for vascular conditions.
    • Hearing Aids: Beneficial for tinnitus related to noise or age-related hearing loss.
    • Medication Changes: Reducing, stopping, or switching medications that cause tinnitus.
  2. Electronic Devices:
    • White Noise Machines: Produce soothing sounds to mask tinnitus, useful at night.
    • Masking Devices: Ear-worn devices emitting continuous low-level noise.
  3. Behavioral Therapies:
    • Tinnitus Retraining Therapy (TRT): Combines sound masking and counseling for symptom management.
    • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT): Techniques from a mental health professional to reduce anxiety and depression related to tinnitus.


Real Ear Measurement (REM)

Real ear measurement (REM) measures sound pressure levels in the ear canal while wearing a hearing aid. Using a silicone probe tube and an external microphone, REM ensures the hearing aid provides appropriate amplification for the patient’s hearing loss. This procedure is crucial as it verifies the hearing aid’s gain based on pitch and volume, helping meet the prescription accurately. Research shows that without REM, patients may not receive sufficient amplification.

Importance of Real Ear Measurement (REM):

  • Limited Usage: Only 30% of audiologists and hearing aid dispensers use REM.
  • Professional Recommendation: ASHA and AAA recommend REM as the preferred method to verify hearing aid performance.
  • Accuracy: The most reliable way to assess the benefit provided by hearing aids.

REM Responses:

  • REUR: Measures sound pressure level (SPL) in the open ear canal.
  • REAR: Measures SPL in the ear canal with the hearing aid on.
  • REIG: Calculates hearing aid gain by subtracting unaided from aided responses.
  • REOR: Measures SPL with the hearing aid in place but turned off.
  • RECD: Compares SPL between real ear and a 2cc coupler using the same signal.

Why Perform Real-Ear-to-Coupler Difference (RECD) Measurements?

  1. Accurate Conversion: Converts assessment data from dB HL to dB SPL for precise calibration.
  2. Target Conversion: Transforms real-ear targets to 2cc coupler targets for better hearing aid selection.
  3. Output Prediction: Predicts real-ear output from the 2cc coupler within ~2 dB, ensuring accurate fitting.
  4. Tailored Fitting: Accounts for unique ear and earmold characteristics to minimize fitting errors.
  5. Controlled Response Shaping: Allows shaping of hearing aid responses in controlled conditions.
  6. Efficiency: Reduces patient time and effort needed for fitting.
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